UNITED NATIONS
2nd International Expert Meeting on a 10-Year Framework of Programmes for Sustainable Consumption and Production:
As contained in Chapter III of the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation
5 - 8 September 2005 | San José, Costa Rica
DESA/DSD
Daily Web Coverage
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Summary report HTML PDF TEXT
11 September 2005

Highlights from Wednesday, 7 September 2005

On Wednesday, 7 September, experts participated in morning field trips and reconvened at noon in the conference center to hear a Plenary presentation on SCP activities in Costa Rica. In the afternoon, experts continued their work in working groups, and heard a panel on cooperation dialogues. 
 


Presentation of SCP activities in Costa Rica
 

Delegates during the presentation of SCP activities in Costa Rica made by Sergio Musmanni

 
 
Sergio Musmanni, Director, Costa Rica National Cleaner Production Center
 

Sergio Musmanni, Director, National Cleaner Production Center, Costa Rica, outlined SCP activities in Costa Rica. These included: an environmental discharge fee to internalize water production costs; a UNEP/Wuppertal Institute “Efficient Entrepreneur Calendar” helping companies achieve SCP autonomously; sector-specific guides and an eco-design manual; plans to promote degradable plastics for niche applications; integrating cleaner production goals into a broader corporate social responsibility initiative; “Fempac,” a Costa Rican packaging scheme following Europe’s successful “Green Dot;” and an initiative establishing baselines of material imports for planning their recycling, treatment and disposal. He said Costa Rica’s current electricity generation is relatively low impact, but that fossil fuel consumption was projected to increase, and that this should be averted through efficient public transport and car sharing, increased biomass power capacity and renewable fuels programmes. He outlined challenges including: finance and technology transfer; encouraging life cycle thinking; hazardous materials treatment and accounting; increasing  waste collection efficiency; developing regulatory land use plans, ecolabels and awards; and increasing consumer awareness and engagement.

 

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Working Group I - Production Processes and Industrial Development
 

Delegates during the Working Group on Production Processes and Industrial Development

     
Takeshi Koga, Fujitsu Limited, Japan


 
 
WG-I Co-Chair Edwin Piñero, Office of the Federal Environmental Executive, United States
 
 
WG-I Co-Chair Olivia la O'Castillo, Asia Pacific Roundtable for Sustainable Consumption and Production (APRSCP), Philippines
 

Takeshi Koga, Fujitsu Ltd, presented “Fujitsu’s Activities to Raise Environmental Values of Products”. He outlined life cycle costing, which expresses social and financial costs within a single index and, using examples, showed how it can reflect product improvements in a way consumers can easily understand. He  highlighted the life cycle assessment label Ecoleaf, which has been rapidly adopted by producers. He stressed that responsible businesses also paid attention to their suppliers’ environmental impact, and outlined Fujitsu’s processes of promoting SCP among suppliers.

In the ensuing debate, participants discussed whether customers will pay more for eco-design, industry-government cooperation, the 3Rs initiative, and “top runner” standards.

Closing the working group, participants discussed practical recommendations. Suggestions included: reaching companies through chambers of commerce; encouraging Cleaner Production Centers to focus on SMEs; including SCP in all levels of education, notably in business schools; calculating the cost of inaction; developing SCP indices; and integrating SCP into national accounts.

 

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Working Group II - Urban Planning and Waste Management

 

Delegates during the Working Group on Urban Planning and Waste Management

         
Miguel Araujo, Basel Convention Secretariat
 
WG-II Co-Chair Cristina Cortinas de Navas, Mexico
 
WG-II Co-Chair Kazuyoshi Okazawa, Ministry of the Environment, Japan
         

Miguel Araujo, Basel Convention Secretariat, made a presentation on the “Basel Convention and the Global Waste Challenge.” He reviewed goals and achievements of the Convention, including the Global Network of Basel Convention Regional Centers, and outlined the 2004 Ministerial statement on partnerships for meeting the global waste challenge. He said the GEF recently began supporting Basel Convention-related work, and that strengthening Regional Centers would enable countries to access more financial resources and submit stronger proposals.

Participants then discussed recommendations from the working groups, noting that in some cases much untapped funding exists, and that in other cases funds are lacking and that the challenge is to close this gap. Recommendations included the following: sustainable funding for municipalities; integration of family planning into long term urban planning; setting up SCP centers in every country, which could be linked to existing networks such as NCPCs, the World Urban Forum or UN Habitat; innovative financing, such as using the CDM funds available at the World Bank; a sustainable development trust fund administered by the UN; tapping into existing initiatives that reward innovative project proposals, such as the SEED Initiative and the World Bank’s Development Marketplace; better coordination between UN agencies addressing SCP and sustainable livelihoods; and preparation of a sustainable urban environmental programme by every capital city in every country.

         
The Co-Chairs discuss the recommendations with Bas de Leeuw, UNEP (left), and Brian Williams, UN Habitat (right)
 
   

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Working Group III - Sustainable Consumption and Product Development

Delegates during the Working Group on Sustainable Consumption and Product Development

 
Eveline Venanzoni, Swiss Agency for the Environment, Forests and Landscape
 
WG-III Co-Chair, Paul Hofseth, Ministry of the Environment of Norway
 
 

Eveline Venanzoni, Swiss Agency for the Environment, Forests and Landscape, outlined success factors for sustainable public procurement, including: a sustainable development strategy and high-level commitment; centralized procurement organization as in the Swiss case; a conducive legal framework; a leading procurement body; cooperation of competent partners; awareness-raising of all stakeholders involved in public procurement; handbooks, practical tools, and economical product criteria; training of purchasers; and international collaboration and information-sharing. Drawing on case studies, she concluded that sustainable public procurement was already possible and that minimum sustainability criteria should be met by all suppliers as entry preconditions to the global market. She said a Marrakech sustainable public procurement task force should work on these issues, giving practical examples of how this might work.

 
 
 

During breakout groups, participants discussed priorities for action. On institutional procurement, recommendations included: sharing information and experiences, perhaps through websites; shared national or international procurement to increase purchasing power; training purchasers; a product database; and sharing information with private sector purchasers. On sustainable culture and lifestyles, recommendations included building national action plans, NGO pressure for implementation, and best practice sharing. On product design, participants recommended developing a shared vision and progress indicators, and focusing on education and raising awareness.

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Working Group IV - Regional and National Strategies for SCP


During the discussion on national SCP strategies, common challenges in both developed and developing countries were identified. Some participants stressed the importance of integrating SCP into national sustainable development strategies as an overall national objective, and of developing concrete sectoral action plans that promote SCP, with targets and indicators. Lack of public understanding of SCP was identified as a challenge. Participants agreed that for some developing countries SCP is still a new issue and not a priority, and that integrating SCP into poverty reduction strategies would be a better approach. Participants acknowledged that countries and regions had different priorities, but identified some common priorities for action, including public procurement and government leading by example, education and awareness-raising, changing behavior, energy, poverty reduction, and overcoming trade barriers and distortions. Individual examples from Switzerland and Norway included setting climate change as a national environmental priority and exploring polices to promote sustainable use of energy, in order to achieve Kyoto Protocol targets.

Participants discussed: involving stakeholders early on to utilize their expertise; the need for clear, coherent targets on SCP and sound, scientific evidence-based decision making; integrating progress monitoring into the strategie formulation process; and establishing a small set of globally accepted indicators, which reflect the ecological, social and economic dimensions of SCP, and are easily communicated.
 

Delegates during the Working Group on Regional and National Strategies for SCP

 
WG-IV Co-Chair Terence Ilott, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), United Kingdom

WG-IV Co-Chair Philip Acquah, Environmental Protection Agency, Ghana

 

The working group broke into smaller groups to discuss questions related to: guidelines to SCP strategy formulation; SCP linkages to poverty reduction strategies, especially the MDGs; indicators and monitoring; bringing together policy makers and academics; involving the private sector, NGOs and local governments more effectively; further work on the costs of inaction; and sustainable procurement. During the discussions, participants reiterated that different countries required different strategies, said voluntary approaches had limits, and discussed whether to establish new strategies or to integrate SCP into existing strategies. On links with poverty reduction, issues addressed included more cooperation between the SCP agenda and poverty reduction, especially the MDGs, and mainstreaming SCP into Poverty Reduction Strategies (PRS). On indicators, the group advocated developing a small set of key indicators at the international level, which could be adapted for national-level use.

 
 

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Working Group V -
Energy, Climate and Air Pollution


Experts were asked to identify priorities at the national and international levels for improving energy efficiency, reducing air pollution, and cooperation. At the national level, experts identified their countries’ priorities including: energy efficiency awareness; public procurement and contracting schemes; sustainable transport strategies, including rural transport; demonstration of renewable energies from a life-cycle perspective; capacity building; pollution monitoring systems; access to technology; and identifying new energy technologies and barriers to those technologies.
 

Delegates during the Working Group on Energy, Climate and Air Pollution

         
At the international level, experts identified priorities including: prioritizing partnerships that have proved effective, like the Global Forum for Sustainable Energy; working on knowledge management tools in the field of sustainable energy; climate change, which experts said the Marrakech Process should only tackle if there was added value in the SCP context; importing old, inefficient appliances from developed countries to developing countries, links to the Basel convention and the relationship between hazardous appliances and energy efficiency; prioritizing sustainability over bulk power generation in international financing for energy projects; disseminating information on national capacities; and facilitating procedures for access to finance. One expert explained the Australian approach to energy efficiency in large industry users, with a policy mandating the top 200 consumers to undergo an energy efficiency opportunities assessment and make its results public. Another expert expressed the need for facilitators to assist knowledge exchange and technology transfer. It was noted that for small island developing States, aggregation of projects was sometimes necessary to reach the minimum size for international donor funding.
         
WG-V Co-Chair Elfriede-Anna More, Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Management, Austria
 
WG-V Co-Chair David Barrett, Jamaica, Manager, Energy and Environment, Petroleum Corporation of Jamaica
         
 
Edgar Ortiz, Fondo Nacional de Financiamiento Forestal, Costa Rica
     

Edgar Ortiz, National Forest Financing Fund, Costa Rica, discussed mainstreaming payments for environmental services in Costa Rica, with particular emphasis on accessing carbon markets. He explained that there are two market segments for carbon emission reductions, the Kyoto and the non-Kyoto, which obey different rules and pay different prices. He described the CDM from the supply side perspective, explaining that “Kyoto lands” are those not forested before 1989, and thus eligible for aforestation under Kyoto mechanisms. The ensuing discussion focused on the CDM and market carbons.

     
David Capper, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs(DEFRA), UK
 
     

David Capper discussed Sustainable Products Task Force, and experts agreed that it would enhance international cooperation on energy appliance efficiency, as long as it complements existing work in the field.

     

Panel discussion on Cooperation Dialogue sessions

Panel discussion on Cooperation Dialogue sessions

 
Allan Flores, Vice-Minister of Environment and Energy, Costa Rica
 
 
James Riordan, Environment Canada

 
 
Sherif Arif, Regional Environmental and Safeguard Advisor, Urban Planning and Waste Management, World Bank
 

Moderator James Riordan, Canada, reported on outcomes of the cooperation dialogue sessions and said all agreed that poverty eradication was the starting point. He reported that the sessions covered: reference to the MDGs; emphasis by development agencies on priorities set by governments in their national development plans; ownership of development initiatives by governments; harmonization of work between development agencies; developing South-South cooperation; supporting regional projects; and preparing and implementing CDM projects.

Sherif Arif, World Bank, stated that the World Bank would finance projects in sectors leading to SCP, and highlighted incentives, institutions, investment and information as necessary components of eligible projects. He said approximately $500 million was available from the Bank for CDM projects and invited countries to submit proposals. He also said that free trade will have a long term impact on SCP, and said this needs to be addressed.

 
Yamada Taizo, Japan International Cooperation Agency
 
Kathleen Abdullah, UN DESA
 
 
 

Yamada Taizo, JICA, Japan, stressed that aid agencies need to know how they can be useful to the Marrakech Process. He said more support was needed, and that that the application process can be very cumbersome. Taizo noted that this meeting provides a forum to discuss issues at the technical level without political discussion.

Kathleen Abdullah, UN DESA, stressed that UN DESA is not a typical donor agency. She underscored the need to see how innovative ideas from one project fit into another SCP project, and to make sure that available funds get used in SCP projects. She stressed the importance of the private sector and the need to work more closely with WSSD partnerships.

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Around the meeting

Delegates before the presentation of SCP activities in Costa Rica
 

 
     
 
     
     

Delegates during the official dinner

 
 
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
 
   

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Daily web coverage: 5 September - 6 September - 7 September - 8 September
     
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